- Published on Thursday, 16 March 2017 10:57
- Written by Saigoneer.
As sidewalk-clearing campaigns take root in Vietnam’s major metropolises, both Hanoi and Saigon are struggling to provide adequate parking space for the increasing number of personal vehicles flooding the city streets.
Though Saigon officials have made an effort to create more parking spaces for four-wheeled vehicles, Tuoi Tre reports the downtown area is home to only one multi-story car park, which is capable of housing 500 automobiles. Beyond this facility, operated by the Saigon Transportation Mechanical Corporation (SAMCO), a handful of shopping malls and office buildings in the downtown area also provide parking spaces at a premium. In the SAMCO parking facility, spaces go for VND2 million a month, the news outlet reports, while overnight rates in local commercial buildings can run around VND200,000.
While these parking facilities provide space for some of the city’s automobiles, it will come as no surprise to Saigoneers that sidewalks in Districts 1 and 3 are often occupied by four-wheeled vehicles, obstructing pedestrian traffic in the downtown area.
In an effort to temporarily tackle this problem, local authorities have also begun allowing vehicles to park in certain areas along Bui Thi Xuan, Suong Nguyet Anh, Ly Tu Trong and Truong Dinh Streets for a small fee, reports Tuoi Tre, however this creates traffic congestion.
In future, the city also has plans to construct underground lots beneath District 1’s Lam Son Square and Le Van Tam Park, however both of these projects are held up in the development stages as city officials struggle with permit and land clearance issues.
Meanwhile, in Saigon’s outer districts, lots sit largely empty. Tan Phu District’s five-story parking facility is capable of holding 1,500 cars, however it has only ever reached 40% capacity.
For all this tension, Hanoi’s parking situation appears to be in worse shape, according to Tuoi Tre, as the capital does not currently have any dedicated parking facilities. Colonel Nguyen Xuan Dinh of the city’s police department told the news source that Hanoi is home to 939 parking lots, 687 of which are located on sidewalks.
[Photo by Nguyen Yen via Vietnam Moi]